The dilemma is VERY simple:
On one side you want to exchange love and create fulfilling relationships!
On the other side you want to protect yourself and avoid pain!
So, that’s the PAIN/PLEASURE dilemma.
Here is another one:
On one side you want the commitment, emotional security and peace.
On the other side you want freedom, space, spontaneity and passion.
So that’s the COMMITMENT/FREEDOM dilemma
Here is another example:
when you are in a relationship, the person you are with might challenge you…
That’s again the pain/pleasure dilemma. Someone can physically or emotionally hurt you.
Imagine… You are a woman. You are single and ok. You meet that guy. You like him. Very early he starts being possessive and demanding.
When someone does that they put you under pressure and use coercive power and threat to get you to do certain things.
Emotional threat! That’s psychic pressure.
This is why after experiencing these patterns a few times, you might consciously or subconsciously decide to be single.
Because it feels safer!
A part of you wants love and relationship. You want to experience romance and connection with a man who loves you BUT another part doesn’t want to get hurt and be emotionally pressured.
You could find sozens of examples like these ones.
The point is that when you engage in the dating or relationship world, you are always between two types of forces that move you in opposite directions.
Here is another set…
The insecurities can be things like:
- Fears of STD’s
- Performance anxiety
- Fear of judgement
This is another dilemma…
You might be afraid of getting stacked in a relationship where passion is gone. You might feel that the original dating stages are way more exciting than the stability of a committed relationship.
The images that come to your mind concerning relationships are NOT exciting.
So, while a part of you wants to believe in a stable relationship, another part keeps destroy them because you prefer the passion, spontaneity and romance of new loves.
So, who wants more connection, more intimacy, more love, more satisfation in their relationships and dating life?
If you answer yes to that question, it means that the conflicting interests patterns that you experience sabotage your love life and it is time to change something
You can either look at the big general picture and design the big plan or identify EXACTLY the core 2 or 3 behaviors, attitudes or mind sets that you would like to change and focus on those.
I find that this is what works best: practically, what exactly do you want to do differently?
What it basically comes to is being able to design a relationship that feels safe, open and freeing in which you can thrive.
Once you have a VERY clear picture of what you want and have the skills to attract that type of connection the subconscious fears and sabotage stop because you know you have the skills to stay safe.
What about the committed/non-committed dilemma?
Different people have different needs.
There isn’t a single relationship model that works for everyone.
What matters is to find out THE relationship model that works for you and saying YES to that.
I see different people being very happy with various relationships models.
Many different models work and there is ONE ideal model that works for you.
The best way to find out what relationship model works for you is to experiment, try them all and find out in which one you feel the happiest.
Who thrives in a committed relationship model?
Who thrives in a non-committed relationship model?
See the difference?
The fact that some people are happily married doesn’t mean that you should too!
The fact that your best friend has multiple sex partners doesn’t mean that this is what you should be doing either.
You CAN design your ideal relationship model according to what you need EXACTLY.
Once you have that model in mind, it’s good to test it with some reality checks to see if it is sustainable and can REALLY work.
The big challenge with testing relationships models is that testing takes time.
When you get married the first time, you might put all your energy in it to make it work and realize 3 years later that marriage doesn’t suit you.
You didn’t know it because you never tried before.
Sure, with some new skills, will power, effort and focus, you might eventually be able to make ANYTHING work.
But if you see another model that is way easier and fulfilling for you, why not embody that one.
Test every model in depth before you give up on it!
Why? Because each relationship model has its own set of challenges.
Each model requires a given set of skills.
If you look into this deeper, one of the reasons why you might self sabotage your relationships or love is because the model you try to manifet doesn’t really suit you.
You know there is another way of relating but you simply don’t want to or don’t know how to embrace it.
THERE IS NO RIGHT OR WRONG, ONLY WHAT YOU WANT
That’s one of the core ideas I want to share!
Very often there is a moral belief that the only valid relationship model is marriage or committed relationship and that anything else doesn’t count!
Of course, not!
There is no right or wrong!
We live in a world of freedom and endless possibilities and probably 80% of relationships in the west nowadays don’t follow a traditional marriage model.
It’s either you or your partner was married before and has children from another marriage.
Or you are experiencing with open relationships and polyamory.
Or you are single and happy.
The point is that most relationships don’t actually follow the traditional one marriage model.
Does it mean that all the rest doesn’t really count???
Of course not!
It is valid!
You can experience any of these other models with total joy and fulfillment every single day of your life.
What you experience in these new relationship models is REAL and COMPLETE if it was you want.
Of course, you might need to navigate some challenges associated with that specific model but the model IS valid!
I am always amazed for instance by how frequently the word commitment-phobic is used.
Non commitment is a POSITIVE CHOICE for most people I know!!
It is not some form of mental disorder!
It is a valid life choice!
And… It doesn’t need to be fixed! It is perfect the way it is!
Of course, if you prefer staying free and don’t want to commit to someone, that person will often pressure you and label you. They will try to diminish and give you some form of syndrome label!
Now, why would people do that?
Because they have an agenda and your vision doesn’t match theirs.
So, they will try to destroy your plan with syndrome like labels.
In other terms, what they say is:
“You have a problem! Go and fix it so that you can fit in MY plan!”
Here is the thing:
BOTH PLANS ARE VALID!
They simply don’t match!
Rather than labeling the other person with syndrome labels, how about putting themselves in the other person’s shoes and saying things like:
“I perfectly see why you want to stay free… The idea of being in a committed relationship might feel limiting because it doesn’t give you enough space for personal growth and life exploration! I totally get your point.”
Now the one who does not want to commit and stay free could say:
“Yes! I totally get the idea that you want stability and steadiness to create a family and that your father instincts are kicking in. You want a woman you can trust and who will be totally faithful and committed to this relationship. I totally understand why you feel these needs! They are real and beautiful desires”
See how it works?
SABOTAGE IS A DEFENCE MECHANISM
Imagine that you are about to go sailing on a ship with a friend.
It’s a beautiful sailing boat.
Now, you read in the news that a hurricane is developing off the coast and if you go sailing now you will get killed for sure.
A part of you wants to go sailing because of the excitement but another part of you knows that it’s NOT SAFE.
Your friend pressures you to go but you instinctively know you should not go.
The night before departing, you go to the boat and sabotage it so that it’s impossible to go sailing the following day.
Get the picture?
In this example, your sabotage strategy IS a POSITIVE defence mechanism that saves your life!
In other words self sabotage is one of the life tactics that you can apply to protect yourself.
I AM NOT READY
Now suppose that your fears and doubts concerning relationships are irrational or overdone.
“I am not ready!”
That’s what you are REALLY saying when you self sabotage your relationships or love life in this situation.
Something is missing:
- I don’t trust it
- I want to keep my freedom
- I know there is someone else
- I am afraid
- I don’t want to get hurt
This is what you are REALLY saying.
I AM AFRAID
Let’s take this example and understand how the sabotage defence mechanism can hold you back.
Suppose that the core emotion that triggers sabotage is fear.
This fear is triggered because years ago, you asked a guy out and he rejected you.
It happened once, years ago, and you still feel it.
This is the exact “traumatic event” that triggers now the sabotage pattern.
Now, is this fear still useful? Does it really help you or is it overdone and holding you back?
It’s abolsutely overdone, right?
Holding to that fear is what holds you back!
What you want is replace fear by confidence and eventually gain back trust in your own dating life.
The way to regain trust is to take small steps forward!
Lots of them!
You see that it’s a challenge and you do it anyway.
Every time you see something that streches you a bit, instead of pulling back and hesitating, you take a step forward and go for it.
If you are challenged by the idea of intimacy with men for instance, you don’t need to go and have one night stands with total strangers.
You can engage in light intimacy more frequently.
See how it works?
That’s how you master your fears and increase your dating power.
Same with relationships challenges…
You can actually take small affordable steps rather than responding to old fears.
So, here are the core ideas we identified so far:
- Sabotage is caused by a conflict between two possible plans in your life.
- Most of the sabotage has to do with avoiding pain or limitation of your freedom.
- Self sabotage is a positive defence mechanism.
- A lot of these defence mechanisms are not needed or overused in you.
- Train new behaviors by taking small steps.
- You have various possible relationship models.
- Which model works best for you?
- There is no right or wrong relationship, only what you want.
A list of the type of dilemmas we discovered so far:
- Sex Shame/Pleasure
- Sex Fears/Pleasure